The US can’t take a hint, but a message coming from 2.5 million people is pretty unmistakeable. From Alan Macleod at mintpressnews.com:
An estimated 2.5 million Iraqis descended on Baghdad to stage a “Million Man March” calling for an end to the nearly 17 year-long U.S. occupation of their country.
People from all over Iraq have descended upon its capital Baghdad, heeding the call from influential Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr for a “million man march” calling for an end to the nearly 17 year-long U.S. occupation of the country. Images from the event show seas of peaceful crowds walking together through the city center. Sayed Sadiq al-Hashemi, the director of the Iraqi Center for Studies, estimated that more than 2.5 million took part in the demonstrations. While there are many divisions in Iraqi society, marchers hope to send a united message against American imperialism.
“Pompeo keeps going on about respecting Iraqi sovereignty. Well Iraqis want you out of their country,” said Lebanese-American journalist Rania Khalek, adding that the recent U.S. assassination of Major General Qassem Soleimani of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has seriously backfired, leading to a huge show of anti-American sentiment. She also took aim at the media coverage; “Whenever a couple hundred people protest against Iran, ittrends on twitter. Yet when hundreds of thousands in Iraq protest against the US? No trending,” she said.
Government is force, and force applied to anything but self-protection is evil. From Gary D. Barnett at lewrockwell.com:
He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, senseless brutality, deplorable love-of-country stance, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base an action! It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder. ~ Albert Einstein–“Mein Weltbild (My World-view)”. Essay by Albert Einstein, 1931.
War is an act of murder at every level, and at every turn a criminal undertaking. Aggressive war is simply killing without just cause, and every war begun as self-defense has turned quickly into aggression at the first moment possible, usually the first day. In the case of the United States, no war is or has ever been about real self-defense, meaning every war was aggressive and criminal murder. The common people claim patriotism in order to hide from this truth, they claim national pride, which is nothing more than state worship, and they rally round the flag as if that could protect them from being complicit in the slaughter of innocents. Those who support aggressive war are simply immoral fools.
When any government or political power structure is in place, there is only one option to avoid war, and that is that none submit to the lies of the state, and none participate in the killing of others on orders. Those that would send the children of others to die in war should volunteer to die themselves, but they are the true cowards among us, and always hide in the shadows when the killing they caused begins. They are only capable of handing out medals posthumously to the families of those they used as fodder for their own benefit and political agendas. All in the Executive Branch, all in Congress, all in any fascist political partnerships that profit from war, and all those who claim false intelligence to stoke the fires of conflict, all these and more should be the first and only causalities of any war. No man of worth has the right to ask others to die in his stead for the state.
Do those who propound the theories that threaten mankind with extinction actually believe them? From Matthew Ehret at strategic-culture.org:
I think any sane human being can agree that while war was never a good idea, war in the 21st century is an absolutely intolerable one. The problem we currently face is that many of the forces driving world events towards an all-out war of “Mutually Assured Annihilation” are anything but sane.
While I’m obviously referring here to a certain category of people who fall under a particularly virulent strain of imperial thinking which can be labelled “neo-conservative” and while many of these disturbing figures honestly believe that a total war of annihilation is a risk worth taking in order to achieve their goals of total global hegemony, I would like to make one subtle yet very important distinction which is often overlooked.
What is this distinction?
Under the broad umbrella of “neo-conservative” one should properly differentiate those who really believe in their ideology and are trapped under the invisible cage of its unexamined assumptions vs. that smaller yet more important segment that created and manages the ideology from the top. I brushed on this grouping in a recent 3 part study called Origins of the Deep State and Myth of the Jewish Conspiracy.
So much for the US’s would-be puppet in Venezuela, Juan Guaido. From Daniel McAdams at ronpaulinstitute.org:
Remember Juan Guaido? Just a year ago the Venezuelan politician, unknown even in his own country, was tapped by the US government to lead a coup against the elected government of Nicolas Maduro. In a phone call with no less than Vice President Mike Pence himself, Guaido was told that if he declared himself president the US would back him. So…he did.
Guaido hadn’t received a single vote to be president in Venezuela’s election – in fact he never even ran for the office – but such absurdity has never stopped the US government from backing military coups overseas. All done in the name of “democracy,” to be sure.
News of US recognition of Guaido as the lawful president of Venezuela led to an avalanche of lies meant to bolster Washington’s claim that Maduro must be overthrown because he was making war on his own people. The claim that the elections were invalid because of fraud were the product of the Foggy Bottom foghorn, amplified by US government funded entities like the Organization of American States instead of any actual evidence or investigation.
Even though Trump refuses to comply with the Iraqis’ request and leave Iraq, count that nation as yet another Eurasian nation slipping out of the US orbit of influence and coercion. From Thomas Luongo at tomluongo.me:
A protester waves the Iraqi flag in Baghdad on Wednesday. Both the U.S. and Iran have launched attacks in Iraq in the past week — including the Iranian missile strike on bases housing U.S. military personnel.
In the aftermath of the killing of Iranian IRGC General Qassem Soleimani a lot of questions hung in the air. The big one was, in my mind, “Why now?”
There are a lot of angles to answer that question. Many of them were supplied by caretaker Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi who tried to let the world know through official (and unofficial) channels of the extent of the pressure he was under by the U.S.
In short, President Trump was engaged in months of what can best be described as gangsternomics in directing the course of Iraq’s future economic and political development.
The indispensable nation does have to leave any place it doesn’t want to, even when it’s asked to do so. From Ron Paul at ronpaulinstitute.org:
President Trump’s decision earlier this month to assassinate Iran’s top military general on Iraqi soil – over the objection of the Iraqi government – has damaged the US relationship with its “ally” Iraq and set the region on the brink of war. Iran’s measured response – a few missiles fired on an Iraqi base after advance warning was given – is the only reason the US is not mired in another Middle East war.
Trump said his decision to assassinate Gen. Qassim Soleimani was intended to prevent a war, not start a war. But no one in his right mind would think that killing another country’s top military leader would not leave that country annoyed, to say the least. Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rand Paul (R-KY) said the Trump Administration’s briefing to Congress on its evidence to back up claims that Soleimani was about to launch attacks against the US was among the worst briefings they’d ever attended.
What kind of arrogant assholes insists that the US stay in Iraq, a putative ally, when that nation doesn’t want us there? From Steven Sahiounie at mintpressnews.com:
Even amongst Iraq’s more pro-US factions, the calls for “Yankee go home” have grown increasingly louder.
Iranian forces launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against two military bases housing US troops in Iraq early hours of Wednesday morning. The al-Assad airbase in western Iraq was hit by 17 missiles, and 5 targeted at a base in the northern Iraqi city of Erbil. No US casualties were immediately reported.
Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, called the attack a “slap in the face” of the US, and observers seem to question whether the attack was designed to kill or inflict casualties, or was it carefully orchestrated to produce closure to a situation which could have escalated into a regional or perhaps world war. Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi said he was informed of the attack by Iran ahead of time, which acted as a safety valve after he, in turn, informed US commanders.
Iraqi militias may now begin attacks of revenge for the US assassination of the Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, who died alongside Soleimani in the drone strike on Friday. Iraqi militia leader Qais al-Khazali said today his group’s retaliation should be “no less than the size of the Iranian response.”